NOVA Coaches
Jun 5, 2019

WITH THE SUMMER LEAGUE SEASON ON THE VERY NEAR HORIZON . . . , I strongly encourage all NOVA families to do their swimming related shopping at NOVA’s own Virginia Swim Shop and to encourage any summer league friends to do the same. All Virginia Swim Shop profits go to benefit NOVA swimmers. The Virginia Swim Shop staff offers years of unmatched experience and will get your swimmer into the right suit and the right goggles. Check out the NOVA spirit wear as well. If it’s something that NOVA swimmers need or want, the Virginia Swim Shop has it or can get it. It’s easy to order on line but that doesn’t your children the way shopping at the Virginia Swim Shop does. So stop by, chat with our friendly staff and see how they can help you and your swimmer with summer league or NOVA outfitting!


COACH MEGAN’S TRIVIA TUESDAY CONTINUES . . . in the Instagram social media section of the website. In case you haven’t guessed, the theme so far is gaining some odd insights into the coaching staff’s backgrounds.


MANY OF THE POIGNANT REMEMBRANCES THIS WEEK EVOKES . . . will soon be increasingly lost to us as a generation of heroes slowly, in Douglas MacArthur’s words, fades away. Now in their upper eighties, early nineties or beyond, these were the young men who fought the Battle of Midway, June 4-6, 1942, and who spearheaded the D-Day Invasion, June 5-6, 1944. That two such important battles and Memorial Day should have occurred in a single two week span is an odd coincidence. Revisiting the courage, resourcefulness and leadership of those battles pays homage to these many brave Americans, both those who died and those who survived. Take a special moment to re-visit Admiral Raymond Spruance’s peerless and sure-handed leadership of the American carriers at Midway. It is a tale often obscured by the Private Ryan glory of D-Day but a detour that is richly rewarding and historically illuminating. Ponder too, the note penned by General Dwight Eisenhower on the eve of the “Longest Day” taking full responsibility for any failure of the D-Day invasion while praising and absolving all who served under his command.

12,000 Allied Casualties: 6600 American, 2500 dead, most on Omaha Beach and in airborne drops, nineteen of them from the small Virginia town of Bedford (read Alex Kershaw’s The Bedford Boys for a heart-rending account).

As Colonel Rudder, commander of the Rangers at Pointe-du-Hoc ten years after D-Day, noted: “ Will you tell me how we did this? Anybody would be a fool to try this.  It was crazy then, and it’s crazy now.

THREE MEETS IN THREE CITIES? NO PROBLEM FOR OUR NOVA SWIMMERS . . . with this past weekend seeing a here, away and away meet format. NOVA’s older swimmers traveled to Stafford to the NCAP Invitational, a meet hosted by country’s #1 team, and populated by swimmers from New England, Arizona and UVA, among other teams. A mostly younger contingent crossed the James to attend the 757 Swim Spring Splash. Then a NOVA contingent of one, Kenley Teller, crossed the Great Divide to attend the Jimi Flowers Classic in Colorado Springs.


We’ll proceed far to near . . . and start with Kenley’s meet in Colorado. The youngest swimmer in the meet, Kenley won a first place in the 50 meter backstroke and used that cross-country energy to record some big time drops.


Next to Stafford . . . where NOVA swimmers posted a treasure trove of fast early season times. Chief among those times were six Olympic Trial cuts, three by previous qualifier Grace Sheble and three new cuts by NOVA’s newest Trials’ qualifiers, Zoe Dixon and Josephine Fuller. In the 400 IM, Zoe removed all suspense with a spectacular 4:46 IM, eight seconds under her previous best and a whopping five seconds clear of the qualifying standard. She repeated that with a 4.5 second drop in the 200 IM setting team and state records with a 2:15 performance. Josephine saved her fire for the last night, dropping over a second to squeeze just under the QT. Congratulations to these two young ladies, now heading to Omaha in 2020 with teammates Megan Pulley and Grace Sheble. And we may have some more Trials qualifiers soon enough as several swimmers edged closer to those QT’s. TSI leaders at this meet?  Charlie Mayr led the way with six, followed somewhat distantly by Aubrey Bowles, Aidan Jacobs, Anna Newell and Liam Ryan with four each. Guess it helped if your first name began with A.


NOVA All Time Top Ten Performances

Devin Naoroz        200 back 7th, 100 fly 8th

Sarah Bender        200 back 4th, 100 breast 5th, 200 breast 4th,  200 IM 6th
Zoe Dixon           200 IM 1st, 400 IM 2nd, 100 back 2nd, 200 breast 8th
Aidan Duffy         200 IM 9th 
Josephine Fuller    100 back 1st, 200 back 2nd, 100 fly 9th
Garrett McGovern    100 free 5th
Liam Ryan           100 back 9th,
Caroline Sheble     200 fly 7th
Matthew Whelan       50 free 2nd, 100 fly 2nd

Hunter Locher       200 IM 10th
Megan Pulley        100 fly, 50 & 100 free 4th
Sydney Whiting      200 free 10th   

Sarah Bender        100 breast 5th
Zoe Dixon           200 IM 1st, 400 IM 3rd, 100 back 4th
Josephine Fuller    100 back 2nd, 200 back 3rd
Caroline Sheble     200 fly 8th  
Matthew Whelan      100 fly 3rd, 50 free 4th

Olympic Trials Cuts
Zoe Dixon          200 & 400 IM
Josephine Fuller   100 back
Grace Sheble       200 & 400 IM, 200 fly

Junior National Cuts
Sarah Bender       200 IM, 100 & 200 breast, 200 free
Morgan Burton      100 fly, 50 & 100 free
Danny Chance       400 free, 200 IM
Zach Cram          100 fly, 200 & 400 IM, 100 & 200 back
Luke Daley         100 back
Chris DallaValle   200 free
Lizzie Danforth    200 & 400 IM, 100 & 200 back
Zoe Dixon          200 & 400 IM, 200 breast, 100 back
Aidan Duffy        100 & 200 breast, 200 & 400 IM
Andrew Farney      100 back
Josephine Fuller   100 free, 100 fly, 100 & 200 back
DC Hellams         400 IM, 200 fly
Courtney Isley     100 fly, 200 IM
Nikolas Lee-Bishop 100 & 200 free, 100 back
Hunter Locher      200 & 400 IM
Garrett McGovern   100 free
Sanna Peterson     200 back, 200 IM
Maddie Pierce      100 back
Megan Pulley       100 fly, 50 & 100 free
Liam Ryan          400 IM, 100 & 200 back
Caroline Sheble    200 back, 100 & 200 fly
Grace Sheble       200 & 400 IM, 200 back, 200 free, 200 fly
Maddie Wallin      200 fly
Sydney Whiting     100 & 200 free

First Place Winners
Danny Chance       400 free
Zoe Dixon          200 & 400 IM
Caroline Gray      100 breast
Hunter Locher      400 IM
Gracie Mueller      200 free, 200 back
Nate Pfeffer       100 back
Megan Pulley       100 fly
Grace Sheble       200 fly
Paige Strycker     200 IM, 100 free
Matthew Whelan     100 & 200 fly, 50 free

Time Standard Improvements
Crash Ackerly      100 fly, 200 IM AA

Cooper Ackerly     200 fly AAA

Cameron Adams      400 IM AA

Harry Belcher      200 IM, 100 free AA

Grace Belden       200 breast AA, 200 IM AAA

Aubrey Bowles      100 free AA, 200 free, 100 & 200 back AAA

Charlie Boykin     200 free AAA

Hampton Burch      100 fly A, 200 free, 200 breast AA

Lily Collins       200 IM, 200 back AA

Zach Cram          100 fly, 200 IM AAA

Eleanor Cribbs     100 free A

Aidan Duffy         50 free AAA, 400 IM AAAA

Thomas Farney      100 fly AA

Josephine Fuller   100 fly, 200 back AAAA

Peyton Geiszler    200 back BB, 200 IM A, 200 fly AA

Will Glass         100 fly, 100 breast BB

Ryder Hewitt       200 back, 200 fly A, 50 free AA

Ava Hutcherson     100 breast A

Courtney Isley     200 IM AAAA

Aidan Jacobs        50 free A, 200 free, 100 back, 200 IM AA

Dalton Jobe        200 IM AA

Carter Kelly       100 breast A, 100 fly AA

Erik Kratzer       100 free AAA

Nikolas Lee-Bishop 100 & 200 back AAA

Hunter Locher      200 IM AAAA

Charlie Mayr       100 breast A, 100 & 200 free, 100 & 200 back, 200 fly AA

Christian Mayr     100 fly, 200 back AA

Garrett McGovern   100 back AAA

Jackson Mueller    100 breast BB, 100 back AA

Devin Naoroz       200 fly, 50 free AAA, 100 fly AAAA

Brooke Nelson      100 back BB, 100 & 200 breast A

Anna Newell        200 fly BB, 100 & 200 back, 200 IM AA

Sanna Peterson     200 fly AAA

Xavier Raymondson  100 breast AA

Keira Reid         100 & 200 fly A, 100 free AA

Abby Russell       400 free, 100 back AAA

Katie Russell      100 breast AAA

Liam Ryan          200 IM AAA, 100 & 200 back, 400 IM AAAA

Colin Schmidt      100 breast BB, 200 free AA

Xander Schreck     100 back AAA

Pablo Silva        100 fly BB, 200 IM, 200 breast AA

Veronica Silva     100 fly BB

Paige Strycker     100 fly, 200 IM AA, 100 free AAA

Alex Sushkoff      100 back A

Preston Trevey     200 fly A

Lauren Underwood   200 fly AA, 200 IM AAA

Ryleigh Vallejo    100 free AA

Claudia Vincent    100 back A

Zach Wachtel       100 free A

Owen Wassmer        50 & 100 free A

Catherine White    200 back, 50 free A

Michael Wood       200 fly BB, 200 free, 100 fly A

Blake Young        200 IM AA


100% Best times
Grace Belden       Peyton Geiszler      Courtney Isley
Aidan Jacobs       Charlie Mayr          Jackson Mueller    
Devin Naoroz      Brooke Nelson       Anna Newell        
Liam Ryan           Owen Wassmer                  

Barrier Breakers
Aidan Jacobs          <   :30          50 free

Liam Ryan             <  1:00         100 back

Crash Ackerly         <  1:00         100 free

Devin Naoroz

Liam Ryan             <  1:10         100 breast

Sanna Peterson        <  1:10         100 back

Brooke Nelson         <  1:20         100 back

Veronica Silva        <  1:20         100 fly

Hunter Locher         <  2:10         200 IM

Zach Cram

Courtney Isley        <  2:10         200 IM

Liam Ryan             <  2:10         200 back

Aubrey Bowles         <  2:15         200 back

Joseph Shaia          <  2:20         200 free

Lsuren Underwood      <  2:30         200 IM

Sanna Peterson        <  2:30         200 fly

Grace Belden          <  3:00         200 breast

Sarah Bender          <  4:30         400 free

Abby Russell          <  4:40         400 free

Liam Ryan             <  5:00         400 IM 


Finally, we cross the James and digest the 757 meet . . . where a small host of NOVA swimmers did the 400 free for the first time! Congratulations once again to our busy 8 & under swimmers - busy re-writing our top ten lists - and to new “A” timers Nathan Geffen, Hazel Cabugason and Emily Yang. Two 11-12 year olds, Alex Gertner and Allison Bischoff, did some Top Ten re-writing of their own with worthy performances. The ever watchful NN TSI eye noted the following totals: Tony Zhang led the way with seven with Anna Barrett, Jordan Chen, Joseph Conner, Lance Cutchin, Alex Gertner and Alice Zhang counting five as their total. Congratulations to all!!

NOVA All Time Top Ten Performances
8 & Unders
Macie Bradley        100 back & 400 free 5th
Gareth Hollender      50 & 400 free 2nd
Natalie Tang         400 free 7th
Caitlyn Moore        400 free 8th
Delaney Nelson       400 free 10th
John Ackerly         400 free 10th

Allison Bischoff     100 free 7th
Alex Gertner         100 breast 10th, 100 back 7th

First Place Winners
Gray Belding        100 fly
Allison Bischoff    100 breast, 50 free
Alex Gertner        200 IM, 100 back, 400 free
Nicholas Kuriger     50 & 100 free
Bri Mason           200 breast
Henry Mulholland    100 fly
Ethan Salser        200 fly
Walker Wilson       100 & 400 free


Time Standard Improvements
John Ackerly        200 IM, 400 free B, 100 breast, 100 back BB

Gabby Acquarro      200 back B, 50 free BB

Hiya Agrawal        100 back B

Olivia Andrade      200 back B, 50 & 100 free BB

Kiersten Armstrong  200 IM, 50 free BB

Addison Barnes      200 breast, 100 back BB

Anna Barrett        400 free BB, 200 IM, 100 back A, 100 free & 100 breast AA

Ashby Belding       100 fly, 100 back BB

Gray Belding        100 fly, 100 & 200 back A

Wilson Berger       200 fly B, 200 breast, 400 free BB

Allison Bischoff    100 breast AA, 50 free AAAA

Bridget Blaszak     100 breast B, 200 IM BB 

Macie Bradley       400 free BB, 100 back A

Carson Brewer       100 & 200 free B, 200 back BB

Veronica Burdsall    50 back BB

Hazel Cabugason      50 free A

Catie Calihan       100 & 200 free BB, 50 back A

Jake Camera         200 IM, 400 free B

Michael Causey      100 free A

Jordan Chan         200 IM, 100 breast, 400 free B, 50 fly & 50 free BB

William Chen        200 IM B

Abby Clifton        100 free B

Sophie Collins      200 breast B, 200 IM, 400 free BB

Joseph Conner       100 & 200 breast A, 50 free AA, 200 IM, 100  back AAA

Wesley Conner       400 free BB

Julia Connor        200 back, 50 free, 200 IM BB

Corinne Cook        200 breast, 400 free BB

Oakley Cotropia      50 fly B

Trip Crone           50 breast BB                                 

Paxton Crank        400 free BB

Lance Cutchin       100 & 200 breast B, 100 & 200 fly, 100 back BB

Anna Dang           100 breast, 50 free B

Abby Dart            50 fly B, 100 free BB

Lina Dawson         200 IM B, 50 free BB

Anne Munro Dillard  100 breast B, 50 free BB

Avery Duke          200 free B

Katie Edds          100 free, 200 IM B

Ben Ehrensberger     50 fly B

Lane Francis         50 breast, 200 free B, 100 back, 50 fly BB

Dana Frink          400 free BB

Nathan Geffen        50 free A

Alex Gertner        400 free, 200 fly, 200 IM, 100 breast AAA, 100 back AAAA

Drew Geyer          200 IM, 50 fly BB

Bella Glenn         200 free BB

Tyler Ha             50 free B

Caroline Hepper     400 free BB

Arman Hoareau       200 IM B

Farrah Hollender    100 back BB

Gareth Hollender    400 free A

Claire Holloway     200 breast B

Alex Horst          400 free B

Drew Hotem          200 & 400 free BB

Lane Jacobs         100 back B

Mary Kate Jacobs    200 back, 100 fly B, 200 breast BB

Maddie Jewett       200 breast, 100 back B

Gibson Jones        400 free BB

Jasper Jones        400 free B, 50 free AA

Riley Jones         100 & 200 breast B, 100 back BB

Caleb Jun           200 back B, 50 free, 50 fly BB

Ali Kirsner         100 fly B

McKenzie Kuehnle    100 free B

Teagan Kuehnle       50 free BB

Kate Kuhlen         200 IM, 50 & 400 free AA

Nicholas Kuriger    200 breast AA, 200 IM, 50 & 100 free AAA

Alina Laraway       400 free, 100 fly BB, 50 back A

Thomas Lothian      200 IM, 50 fly B, 200 breast BB

Anna Luchsinger     200 free B, 50 back BB

Orlando Ma          400 free, 100 breast B, 200 breast, 50 free BB

Nicole Makris       100 back, 50 fly BB

Bri Mason           200 fly BB, 200 free A

Lauren McCann       200 back, 100 free BB

Cassidy Miklos      100 back B

Danny Mooney        200 free, 100 fly B, 50 breast BB

Caitlyn Moore       400 free B, 200 IM, 100 back, 100 free BB

Braidan Morgan      400 free, 100 & 200 breast B

Jackson Morgan      200 IM, 100 breast B, 100 back BB

Kelsey Morris       200 back, 200 breast, 100 free B

Katelyn Morrow      100 back B

Anjali Mukundan     200 IM, 100 & 200 breast B

Henry Mulholland    200 IM A, 50 back AA

Wiley Mulholland    100 fly B, 200 back BB

Cole Nelson         400 free B, 100 fly BB

Delaney Nelson      100 fly, 200 & 400 free B, 100 back BB

Zac Ng              100 free A

Becca Nystrom        50 free B

Reilly Owens         50, 200 & 400 free B, 100 fly BB

Nikhil Palavalas    200 IM, 100 free B

Marina Pantelic     400 free, 50 fly B

Abby Paullin        400 free BB

Jonathan Payne      200 fly B

Eric Pelham         400 free A

Alyssa Perkins      100 fly BB

Justinas Petkauskas 200 back BB

Ford Reams IV       400 free B

Cameron Rhodes      200 breast, 400 free B

Reese Richardson    200 IM B, 100 free, 100 breast BB

Matthew Rivas       200 fly B, 50 free A

Ethan Salser        200 fly, 400 free BB

Candice Santos      200 IM, 100 free BB

Greer Schneider     100 breast B, 200 IM BB, 50 free A

Stella Shropshire   400 free B

Cathy Smolka        100 & 200 breast B

Ryan Szobota        100 back BB

Natalie Tang        400 free B, 200 IM, 100 back BB

Abigail Thornton    400 free, 100 back B

Christian Thornton  200 breast B

Hannah Thornton     100 back BB

Kate Tittermary     200 fly B

Bea Villanueva      100 back BB

Sadie Wafford       200 free B, 50 & 100 back BB

Caroline Walton     100 free B

Emmett Weeks        100 back, 400 free B

Lila Weeks          100 breast, 50 free B, 100 back BB

Abby Wheelin        400 free B

Gabby Wlodawsky     200 IM B, 50 free BB

Ashley Xiao         100 back BB

Emily Yang          100 free B, 200 IM BB, 50 free A

Lindsey Yue         100 back, 50 fly B

Alice Zhang         200 IM, 50 fly B, 100 back, 50 free BB, 100 breast A

Tony Zhang      100, 200 & 400 free, 50 breast BB, 100 breast, 200 IM A, 50 back AAA

Carter Zubris       200 IM, 100 breast B


Bold print indicates first “A” time in current age group


100% Best Times
Clare Aman                Addison Barnes         Anna Barrett             
Gray Belding              Andrew Berger          Ava Berger                
Wilson Berger            Allison Bischoff          Charlotte Causey       
Joseph Conner           Anna Dang                Chloe Daub               
Katie Edds                  Ben Ehrensberger     Lane Francis               
Dana Frink                 Alex Gertner              Drew Geyer                
Tyler Ha                     Gareth Hollender      Claire Holloway         
Maddie Jewett           Gibson Jones            Riley Jones                 
MacKenzie Kuehnle   Sanika Kumar           Nicholas Kuriger        
Alina Laraway            Thomas Lothian        Danny Mooney        
Anjali Mukundan       Wiley Mulholland      Delaney Nelson        
Becca Nystrom          Marina Pantelic         Eric Pelham               
Matthew Rivas          Candice Santos         Greer Schneider        
Christian Thornton    Ford White                Ashley Xiao               
Emily Yang                 Lindsey Yue              Alice Zhang                

Barrier Breakers
Nicholas Kuriger      <    :30       50 free

Michael Causey        <   1:10      100 free

Matthew Rivas

Alex Gertner          <   1:10      100 back

Zac Ng                <   1:20      100 free

Eric Pelham           <   1:20      100 back

Joseph Conner         <   1:30      100 breast

Alex Gertner

Reese Richardson      <   2:00      100 breast

Zac Ng                <   3:00      200 free

Carson Williams       <   3:00      200 back

Wiley Mulholland

Kate Kuhlen           <   3:00      200 IM

Matthew Rivas

Nicholas Kuriger      <   3:00      200 breast

Ethan Salser          <   3:00      200 fly

Gabby Acquarro        <   3:30      200 back

Kelsey Morris

Stmsn Hoareau         <   3:30      200 IM

Katelyn Morrow

Anjali Mukundan

Wesley Conner

Alina Laraway

Sophia Ng

Thomas Lothian        <   3:30      200 breast

Wilson Berger

Orlando MA

Kelsey Morris         <   4:00      200 breast

Ford White

Alex Gertner          <   5:00      400 free

Gray Belding          <   5:30      400 free

Ethan Salser

Wilson Berger         <   6:00      400 free

Sophie Collins

Cameron Rhodes

Gareth Hollender

Eric Pelham

Anna Barrett          <   6:30      400 free

Charlotte Causey

Wesley Conner

Caroline Hepper

Alina Laraway

Abby Paullin

Macie Bradley         <   7:00      400 free

Dana Frink

Alex Horst

Gibson Jones

Cole Nelson

Stella Shropshire


WE HAVE POSTED OUR EVALUATION SCHEDULE . . . so please pass that on to interested families. Here it is in convenient front page of NN format.

We remind current NOVA families that we can evaluate siblings at any time. It is not necessary for current NOVA families to attend an evaluation.

SUMMER LEAGUE PRACTICES HAVE STARTED . . . and the NOVA Coaching staff has a few reminders:

Please continue your NOVA practice schedule. Summer league practices are not a substitute for what we do here.

Swimmers, especially younger ones, are encouraged to add summer league practices to their current schedule.

More practices means better ear care (see note below).All NOVA swimmers should be mindful to be good and encouraging teammates to their summer league friends. Once we post our evaluation schedule, please encourage your summer league friends to check us out by attending one of our evaluations.


THIS WEEKEND’S 12 & U TEAM TRAVEL TRIP . . . gives me an opportunity to answer a few questions.

Q: Who goes on team travel trips? What group starts to travel?
Team travel begins with the AGDS/ADGD levels and continues into the uppermost levels of the program. Sometimes the meets are restricted by time qualifications, sometimes not.

Q: When are team travel meets? Where do they go?
Team travel meets generally occur in December, January and the summer months. In the past, we have gone to Maryland, North Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee and Florida, just about any meet location in the range of our rented buses.

Q: Why team travel? Couldn’t the parents take them?
Team travel allows NOVA to compete against normally  inaccessible teams out of state. It also allows the swimmers to develop the “road” skills they will need as they move up the swimming ladder. Swimmers attending Junior Nationals stay      at a motel for nearly a week and have to learn how to take care of themselves (with help from our wonderful chaperones).  Team comradery and spirit are built on the buses, in the hotel     rooms and on the pool decks, something that wouldn’t happen if swimmers stayed with parents. While parents can almost always opt to take swimmers, this isn’t recommended.

Q: Are the team travel meets well-chaperoned?
NOVA was a pioneer in getting background checks on all chaperones before it was required by US Swimming. Our trip managers and the coaching staff sit down to work out an adequate level of chaperoning which varies by age group. We have been wonderfully staffed by chaperones who never saw their own children swim because they were tending to sick children. So parents can rest fairly assured.

Q: Why not stay in town or within an easy drive?
To develop our swimmers’ racing skills, we have to seek out strong opposition. We are fortunate that two of the country’s strongest teams are just up I-95. Sometimes we visit them; sometimes they visit us. New facilities can be exciting and excitement can lead to superlative performances. Competing endlessly in the same pool, not matter how wonderful, can lead to a certain ennui. 

Q: Is there a cost involved?
Team travel is billed. When a team trip is planned, estimates are provided to the attending families.

Q: Should I celebrate or cry when I put my child on the bus?
Some small tears ensue as parents send their child off on a first bus trip, but that sadness probably turns more to celebration with each passing year. A bus trip is a rite of passage for parents and swimmers. So, no worries, cry or smile as you see fit.


LOST BUT NOT FOUND ARTICLES . . . are poised to take a permanent field trip to Goodwill. If you have lost anything, please check out the competition pool. Hard to miss our display racks!!

SWIM-A-THON TOTALS CONTINUE TO MOUNT . . . as NOVA swimmers are now past the 100 K mark. Currently, we have eleven swimmers who have topped the $1000 marks. S-A-T is, at its warm and beating heart, a teaching moment: it is an opportunity for swimmers to get some sense of the structure behind the team, to remind them that bills have to be paid, that checks must be signed or credit cards swiped; it is also an opportunity to remind swimmers and parents that they, not the coaching staff, are the “owners” of NOVA. And this is their chance to be part of that process and to become aware of just what enables them a chance to pursue aquatic dreams.

Leaders?  The Top five appear on the main S-A-T sheet so let’s go with them.
Currently #1   Brantley Patterson
Currently #2   Aidin Muminovic
Currently #3   Caroline Zorn
Currently #4   Sadie Webb
Currently #5   Bella Little

Group leaders? Novice Gold maintains its hold on first, followed by a tight now five-way battle among AGS, AGG, SDS, AGDG and AGDS. Thanks and congratulations to all.



WARM WEATHER WARNINGS FOR THE WISE . . . . We all love the onset of spring. Blossoms, warmer weather, that yellow dust - OK - mixed blessings. Here are some heads-ups from the coaching staff that might make your spring/summer swimming experience more pleasant and more effective:

  • A 50/50 mix of isopropyl alcohol and white vinegar will do the trick. All a couple of drops to each ear during the more humid spring and summer months and that bit of unpleasantness and expense will be avoided.
  • Use sunscreen - weekends and gym classes can bring unnecessary ouch to a practice.
  • Wear sandals or shoes. A cut toe, a skin flap, a significant slice can be highly annoying when exposed to the movements and length of a practice.
  • Hydration. Thirst is a sign of dehydration. The practice performance of dehydrated swimmers will suffer. Drink 8-12 ounces before going to bed to battle any creeping dehydration. Bring a large water bottle to practice!!


OUR COACHING STAFF’S EXPRESSED GOAL . . . is to answer e-mails promptly. If promptly isn’t possible because we are on-deck, working out, or out to dinner, for example, we aim to answer inside a 24 hour cycle. That 24 hours or less goal applies to the M-F workweek and some coaches extend that to include Saturday AM. A weekend e-mail may not get answered until Monday; a vacation e-mail may not get answered until a staff member returns from vacation. When we are on-deck or at a meet, that “prompt” response cycle may also be interrupted. Hope this clarification helps.  


SOME OF OUR COLLEGE-BOUND SENIORS HAVE MADE DECISIONS . . . and we are delighted to announce the following future destinations. Our rule here is simple: gotta know before a name is added to this list. So here’s what we currently know. If you know and we don’t, stay calm and drop me a line. Our latest announcement is identical to last week’s! Also University of Virginia-bound is Zachary Carroll so that contingent is getting mighty sizable. Wahoo-wah to Zach, Charlottesville-bound in the fall! Be assured, NN remains vigilant: you will know when it knows!!

Maggie Baham      Allegheny College
Zachary Carroll   University of Virginia
Colin Clements    William & Mary
Mary Cornett      Penn State
Zack Cram         North Carolina State
Chris DallaValle  Duke
Sally Ennis       Washington & Lee
Claire Evko       University of Lynchburg
Mark Graff        Vanderbilt
Maura Graff       William and Mary
Reid Hutcherson   Villanova
Conner Jorgensen  Virginia Military Institute
Quinn Keatley     Roanoke College
Stephen Laming    University of Virginia
Tillie Lewis      NYU
Alli Lovell       University of the Cumberlands
Patrick Madden    Denison
Caitlin McSorley  University of Virginia
Joey Mistretta    University of Virginia
Iain Moore        Franklin & Marshall
Alexa Owen        University of Virginia
Peyton Proffitt   William and Mary
Clara Rodriguez   University of Virginia
Michael Senter    Randolph-Macon College
Ethan Spencer     DePauw University
Laney Van Lenten  Washington & Lee
Nicholas Viers    Duke


SPRING AND THEN SUMMER CAN BRING UNSETTLED WEATHER . . . in the form of thunderstorms. We have a grounded pool and practices will proceed without being interrupted by the sound of distant thunder. We do evacuate the pool when a storm is right on top of us as an extra precautionary measure. As soon as the storm has passed, we will get back in. We have no mandatory 30 minute policy as many summer pools do.

THE COACHING STAFF IS ALWAYS LOOKING TO IMPROVE THE MEET ENTRY PROCESS . . . both for parents and for our meet management folks. Each meet entry is posted and coaches strongly request that parents either accept or decline a meet entry. We do aim to accommodate late entries whenever possible but that means extra work for our meet entry team. So please let us know your intentions for meets listed for your swimmer’s training group.  Just log in, find the appropriate meet and let us know your intentions. The coaching staff will also often send reminder e-mails as meet deadlines approach.

DAYLIGHT SAVINGS/SPRING TIME MEANS THAT NOVA SWIMMERS EMERGE INTO DAYLIGHT . . . and that some will be playing outside as they await pick-up. Drivers beware; parents beware. Please advise your children to stay on the NOVA grounds in front of the building where more traffic exists.

PARENTS BE ADVISED THAT CHILDREN PLAYING OUTSIDE THE BUILDING ARE NOT UNDER THE SUPERVISION . . . of any NOVA staff member.  If your child plays outside and that is OK with you, please remind them that ours is a “trafficked” parking lot and that swiftly darting young children should be wary of the driving lanes.  On the other hand, we are asking that all parents be especially vigilant when you enter our parking lot.  On a slightly related note, please respect the handicapped parking places.  I know folks like to use these spaces for picking up swimmers but they are there to provide easy access for handicapped or special needs swimmers and visitors.  We appreciate your support !

OUR LOST BUT NOT FOUND . . . is one unmanned store with some customer friendly store hours, generally 4:45 AM to 8:30 PM M-F with generous weekend hours available as well. Its business cycle is unusual. Inventory grows and grows until the invisible hand of the marketplace sweeps all away to the waiting hands of Goodwill or the Salvation Army. Towels, suits and water bottles are inventory staples but jackets, boots and umbrellas are not unknown! Feel free to stop and shop and claim what is yours. Look for all that inventory currently hanging on the bleachers in the competition pool to be finding a new home by the end of the week.

A TIMELY REMINDER:   As parents, we all hope our children do well in school and that means a steady diet of “A’s” and correct answers. Success is what we want them to embrace. While we want them to do the same in athletics, it is worth noting that the path to success in sports is littered with failure. LeBron fouls, Bryce Harper strikes out, Messi misses. Failure and/or mistakes are constants in all sports. It is part of the passage to success. Some failures are absolutely the key to great future success. So stay patient during the process: it’s sports, not school. NOVA’s coaches understand that DQ’s, missed turns and their kith and kin are learning moments!

DO YOU HAVE ADDITIONAL FAMILY MEMBERS WHO HAVE EXPRESSED INTEREST IN NOVA? FRIENDS WHO SEEM INTERESTED?  We stand ready to evaluate any and all who have summer swim team level abilities.  Evaluations are quick, easy and free. Interested? E-mail Drew or Geoff. We can take care of most swimming levels somewhere in our program.  From lessons to Masters, NOVA is a full service swimming organization, the best in Richmond and in Virginia.  Modesty forbids us to say more so we’ll stop with that minor bragging.

BEFORE DONATING ELSEWHERE . . . check with the staff to see if NOVA has a need. For example, re-doing your kitchen? Have a decent refrigerator? Consider taking the tax write-off and helping NOVA. We have three such refrigerators here at NOVA but we are always looking to update.



WE HAVE THE NOVA FLAT HAT BULLETIN BOARD . . . that traces, through pictures, the travels of NOVA families and their NOVA caps. I thought it would be fun to see NOVA’s international bloodlines. Here is the rule: only parents and children count. So parents or children have to be first generation here in the United States.  Here’s what we have gathered - I suspect we have more. That proved to be true once again after a long calm!! We now have 39 countries and counting! Exchange student Varin Schefte breaks our South American streak by hailing from the land of the Midnight Sun, Norway. Don’t hold out on us regarding your point of origin if you’re not on this list! 

Czech Republic


Seychelles Bosnia & Herzegovina
South Africa
Sri Lanka
The Philippines

E-mail Coach Geoff with any additions. I suspect we will have an amazing NOVA tapestry when we are done - if we ever get done!!!